Who We Are

The Botanical Club of Wisconsin, the state's only organization dedicated to the study of our native flora, was founded in 1968 by John Thomson as an affiliate of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts and Letters. The BCW serves the interests of amateur and professional botanists toward the common goal of learning more about our state's plant biodiversity.

BCW Winter Events

4/27/2022 - Mary Ann Feist presents the origins, accomplishments, and future of the Wisconsin Botanical Foray.

Click here to watch the recording on YouTube

January 12 - Studying Phlox divaricata sub-species variation

Please join us on Wednesday January 12 as Cara Streekstra (UW-Madison) will present her Master's thesis research. Phlox divaricata L. (Polemoniaceae), a woodland perennial native to eastern North America, has two distinct morphological variants. Phlox divaricata subsp. divaricata Wherry is characterized by corolla lobes with a distinct apical notch; P. divaricata subsp. laphamii (Alph. Wood) Wherry is characterized by entire, obtuse or apiculate corolla lobes. Cara, the 2020 John Thomson Award recipient, uses morphological and phylogenetic approaches to explore variation between these subspecies and whether analyses support the recognition of two subspecies. She will highlight P. divaricata populations found in Wisconsin and discuss her continuing work on the species.

Cara has deep connections to UW Botany, earning her bachelor's degree from the department and her Master's there in 2021. In addition she has worked at the Botany Garden and Greenhouses for 9 years, currently as Curatorial Manager.

Where: Your home or office! You will need the Zoom link and passcode listed below. (Link emailed to current BCW Members)

When: Wednesday January 12th, 2022. 6:30 p.m.

Who: Open to the public

Have questions or need the link? Email Botanicalclubofwisconsin@gmail.com

Botanical Foray Plant ID/Processing Workshop!

Saturday December 4th at the Wisconsin State Herbarium from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm.

This past summer, the Botanical Club of Wisconsin and the Wisconsin State Herbarium held their third Wisconsin Botanical Foray. During the Foray, we collected over 900 plant specimens, and now we could use your help! The specimens must be sorted and then their field identifications must be verified. In addition, some specimens that have been verified already need to be mounted. Come and give us a hand! All levels of botanical knowledge are welcome! There will be tasks that anyone can help with, and we will provide training. It will be a great opportunity to look at plants in the middle of winter and increase your plant ID skills!

The event will take place on Saturday December 4th at the Wisconsin State Herbarium from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm. Join us for an hour or for the entire time. Covid-19 protocols will be followed. Masks must be worn at all times while in the herbarium.

Please RSVP as we will limit the number of participants to 20.

Contact Mary Ann Feist (mfeist@wisc.edu; 608 890-1427) with any questions or to RSVP.

Check this website for parking options on the UW-Madison campus.

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The Mission of the Botanical Club of Wisconsin

    • To promote the preservation of native plants through restoration projects, natural area identification, and rare plant protection.

    • To educate the public as to the value of Wisconsin's plants and the natural communities in which they grow.

    • To foster research on the life history and biology of members of our native flora.

    • To provide a means for fellowship and information exchange among Wisconsin's plant enthusiasts.

Click here to view the BCW Constitution and By-laws

BCW Membership -Join or Renew!

Membership Benefits

The Botanical Club of Wisconsin is a charitable 501(c)(3) organization that depends on your membership and tax-deductible donations to fund research and conservation activities that benefit the flora of Wisconsin. BCW membership benefits include:

  • Educational and recreational opportunities, including guided field trips, botany blitzes, workshops, and evening presentations

  • Subscription to The Flora, the biannual BCW newsletter

  • Annual meeting that features social gathering, a guided field trip, lunch, and a botanical presentation by educators and scientists